HOWARD CITY — Victor “Vic” Matulis, coach of the Tri County girls varsity soccer team, was named coach of the year for Division 3, District 36 by the Michigan High School Soccer Coaches Association (MHSSCA).
Matulis, who has been the Vikings coach since 2011, led the team to a historic finish this season, finishing with a regular season record of 19-2, winning a share of a conference title and earning the program’s first district title.
This is the first time he was recognized by the MHSSCA.
“Since I took over in 2011, the girls program just gets better and better. With an 18-game schedule, this team usually finishes with only four losses,” Matulis said. “We’ve been to the district finals three or four times times. They just get better and better.”
Matulis said the team’s defense was key to the amount of success the Vikings enjoyed this year, posting five shut-outs this season and holding opponents to three shots on goal or less in eight of their games.
“The team just meshed as a team. Hard work was every day,” he said about his players. “I didn’t have to push anybody, starter or non-starter. They would start practice themselves. It got to the point that they pushed each other.”
Tri County Athletic Director Phil Butler has been impressed with Matulis’ dedication to the program and the school itself.
“Coach Matulis has put in a ton of time and effort into the soccer program at Tri County. It is so great to see those many hours start to pay off,” Butler said. “This year was special and one that will be remembered forever. So many great families and athletes to thank. Coach did a nice job of making this more about team work than winning and, in the end, the great teamwork paid off with a conference championship and district title.”